And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee,
&c.] Which is his glory; the glory of the Lord lies in his goodness, and that appears in the works of his hands, in the methods of his providence, especially in the distribution of his sovereign grace and mercy, and particularly in his pardoning grace and mercy, through the blood of Christ; for as it is "the glory" of a man "to pass over a transgression", ( Proverbs 19:11 ) much more it is the glory of God, of which this goodness is afterwards interpreted; and may be understood of Christ himself, who is the goodness of God itself, is not only good, but the Lord's good One, emphatically good; as he is called his holy One, so his good One; because all his goodness is laid up in him, is prevented and filled as Mediator, with the blessings of his goodness; all are proclaimed in him, displayed through him, and communicated by him; and he is that glorious Personage that Moses might be desirous of having a view of, and was favoured with; however, with a view of the divine goodness, as it is conspicuous in him, in what he is, and has done for his people; for God has shown forth the exceeding riches of his grace and goodness in him:
and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee:
his name and his nature, his perfections, and the glory of them, as displayed in Christ; or when he is about to pass, or while he is passing by, lest he should pass by unobserved, I will proclaim aloud and give thee notice that he is now passing by thee, whose name is Jehovah, and whose nature, glory, and goodness, are as follow:
and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show
mercy on whom I will show mercy:
signifying that notwithstanding the children of Israel had sinned against him in such a manner as they had, yet he should show favour, grace, and mercy to them, in pardoning their sins; and it should be distributed, not according to any merits of theirs, but according to his sovereign will and pleasure, and not to all, but to whomsoever he thought fit; and in this would be seen his glory: and so it is with respect to grace and mercy, as displayed in Christ to sinful men; it is not in proportion to their deserts, but according to the purpose and good will of God, and that not unto all, but unto some whom he has appointed, not unto wrath, but unto salvation by Jesus Christ, and which is to the glory of his grace; and the more enlarged view men have of this, the more clearly and fully does the goodness and glory of God pass before them.